I have long wondered why any two children born in the same family respond differently to the family environment and even their own genetic make-up. Why do some siblings from the same family turn to drugs, alcohol and other self-medication, for example, while others find the inner strength to work past the negative forces of their home environment and become a success?
I have seen vastly different outcomes between siblings and even those who are twins—it’s not home environment, then or even genes. What is it, from what source comes that quality of self-determination that makes one person succeed in life while another stumbles, fails and fails yet again?
In my family, we are stubborn, we have that fighting quality to keep on going no matter what. Some of us stumbled at first but we got up, assessed the situation, and made changes that took enormous strength of character and courage, that unwavering determination to make a positive change.
Some of us didn’t stumble at all, however. That’s what I want to know about. Some of us didn’t go down the wrong path to start with, despite how easy that could have been. Why not?
I have spoken with people who said they knew from the time they were small children what they would do with their lives, what they would be. And that is, indeed, what happened.
I have also spoken with people who have never understood that they make their own future by what they do today, that they are the captains of their own ship and that they should be aboveboard steering, as Thoreau said. Amazingly, some aren’t even on the ship but lolling on the banks waiting for the passage of time to bring them their future, to wash them along on a flood of fortune. Some are convinced that is their due, that all things good in life are owed them.
Here’s how it works, I want to tell them. First, you listen to your soul and how you do that can take many forms. Next, you think it, then you visualize it, then you research to learn what you need to make it happen, and finally, you take action. You advance unwaveringly, no matter how much time it takes. Eventually, you get to where you want to be, powered by the engine of self-determination.